Mar 15, 2011 12:00 AM by John Romero
Lines are being drawn in Pueblo County as county commissioners consider bringing a 24,000 acre nuclear power plant to Avondale. The debate is so heated, meeting nights are split based on those in favor and those who aren't. Tuesday night belonged to those in favor of bringing the plant to Southern Colorado.
Don Banner who formed Puebloans for Energizing Our Community says concerns about safety aren't as bad as opponents say. "Nuclear fuel is not radio active." he explained to county commissioners, "You could touch nuclear fuel before it goes into the vessel at the nuclear power plant and it wouldn't hurt you one bit."
Pueblo resident Michael Aragon thinks the plant could boost the local economy. "There's a lot more potential for growth and everything." he says "I think this would help the town of Pueblo, Colorado tremendously."
For others like David Lucero, it comes down to dollars and cents. "The way they talk about it, it will lower taxes." he says "A big plant like that would probably pay most of the taxes on it."
But the biggest gain in proponents eyes is the potential for hundreds, maybe even thousands more jobs in Southern Colorado. "I worked 3 months last year. Other than that Comanche Plant (a nuclear plant in Texas) there's nothing going on." says Aragon. "If we could get a thousand people off the street we're they're providing, that's a big boost for Pueblo right there." explains Lucero.
There will also be a meeting with county commissioners who are opposed to the nuclear plant. That meeting will happen Wednesday March 16th at 5pm at the Sangre De Cristo Arts Center in Pueblo.